Our Lenten focus on hope is aligning with growing hope within our province as more vaccines are being offered and our numbers continue to decline. It is a cautious hope, as variants continue to be detected and many unknowns still lie before us. Westworth is therefore continuing to be cautious in its reopening plans. Our online services and small groups through Zoom offer opportunities for spiritual nourishment and connection. While they certainly don’t replace the benefit of in-person gatherings, they do keep us safe. We are therefore planning to remain online at least through Easter. As you see below, online worship offers us creative opportunities to include community partners in our worship. We are trying to find the rainbows in the clouds!
This coming week, I will be on holiday and Rev. Earl Gould will be leading worship on March 14 and offering emergency pastoral care March 8-14. You may reach him during this time at (204) 888-1543. We will also leave his phone number on the church phone voice mail.
I will close with a paraphrase of the Beatitudes by Nadia Bolz-Weber:
“Blessed are they who have loved enough to know what loss feels like.
Blessed are they who don’t have the luxury of taking things for granted anymore.
Blessed are they who can’t fall apart, because they have to keep it together for everyone else.
Blessed are those who still aren’t over it yet.
Blessed are those who mourn.
Blessed are the forgotten.
Blessed are the closeted.
Blessed are the unemployed,
Blessed are the unimpressive.
Blessed are those who are underrepresented.
Blessed are the wrongly accused.
Blessed are the ones who never catch a break.
Blessed are the ones for whom life is hard.
Jesus chose to surround himself with people like them.”
Blessings of Hope,
BECAUSE THERE IS HOPE HERE: LENT 2021 WORSHIP SERVICES
This year’s Lenten services will feature congregational reflections on hope.
The wisdom of the cross with Martin Robson singing.
Loraine will be on holiday March 8-14 and Rev. Earl Gould will be leading worship.
The heart of the cross; Celtic-themed Lenten service with Emily Casselman singing.
HOLY WEEK SERVICES
All of our Holy Week Services will be offered jointly with St. Andrew’s River Heights United Church
Palm Sunday live-streamed at Westworth at 10:45 am
Maundy Thursday pre-recorded at St. Andrew’s and available at 6:00 pm. Have communion elements, water, basin and towel ready as you join the service from home.
Good Friday pre-recorded at Westworth, St. Andrew’s, West Broadway Community Ministry and Oak Table, available at 10:30 am
April 4 live-streamed at Westworth at 10:45 am with 6 youth confirmations and Morna-June Morrow on handbells.
Every Lent, we invite donations for our special appeals to support our non-profit community agencies and ministry partners. The congregation usually raises around $1600 and the UCW contributes $1800 from their Rummage Sale and Bazaar fundraisers. Because the UCW was unable to hold either due to COVID-related building closures last year, the congregations generously gave $2500, which allowed us to continue supporting most of our partners. This year, the UCW is again unable to contribute because our building remains closed to fundraisers. We are therefore asking the congregation once more to consider giving more than usual so that we can continue supporting our partners, who are more stretched than ever. These are the partners we were able to support last year through Special Appeals:
Prairie to Pine Regional Council Bursary Fund
St. Andrews College
Sandy Saulteaux Spiritual Centre
Centre for Christian Studies
Local social justice :
West Broadway Community Ministry
1 Just City
L.I.T.E. (local investment towards employment)
Rock Lake United Church Camp
Our Special Appeal donation deadline is Easter Sunday, April 4.
SUNDAY SCHOOL NEWS
This is the Third Sunday in Lent- our service theme will be HOPE.
This week’s Sunday school lesson ‘The parable of The Sower’ has been sent by e-mail, it includes all the age groups from N/K to G5/6, with the activity sheets. If you need a printed copy of the curriculum, please let me know at email@example.com.
The Sunday school teachers will be on Zoom this Sunday from 10.15am-10.30am to chat with you. After our welcome, Julia will now read the0 Bible story at the beginning of each Zoom Sunday school. Our chat theme this week will be about ‘Choices ’. Then join the online service starting at 10.45am this week with Loraine following Zoom Sunday school.
This week’s bible story is still read by Julia, and The Lord’s Prayer is read by Danielle, your Sunday school teachers are on the Westworth Face Book page for you to view, there is also a link in the CE drop down menu on our web site.
The Bible Story is also available here:
Zoom Sunday School Information
Zoom Meeting ID 743 937 1522
Pass Code 042976
DAILY LENTEN CONTEMPLATIVE PRAYER
Rev. Barb Jardine has put together a Lenten series that introduces us to the practice of contemplative prayer. Her introduction, along with her daily 10 min. YouTube videos are designed for beginners who have never tried this form of prayer. These can be found in the link below and on our website home page in the What’s New section. Barb has produced these for her congregation, but she is willing for Westworth to have access to them as a thank you for the inspiration she received from Thriving Churches.
Here is this week’s installments:
WEST BROADWAY COMMUNITY MINISTRY
The Outreach Team is overwhelmed with your generous support for the lunch program that Westworth will continue to offer on a monthly basis. Thank you so much for your contribution to the cost of each month’s lunch of which is approximately $350. Cheques may be sent to the Westworth office with the memo line indicating “WBCM lunches”.
As the building remains closed, weekly donations of food, toiletries and feminine hygiene products cannot be placed in the WB Buckets, please consider making a donation to the purchasing of food and supplies for the pantry. Cheques to Westworth with “WBCM Pantry” on the memo line are gratefully received!
WEST BROADWAY COMMUNITY MINISTRY ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
West Broadway’s annual general meeting will take place on:
Sunday, March 14, 2021
For a Zoom invite, Contact: Lynda Trono at firstname.lastname@example.org
The Manitoba Multifaith Council has a number of beautiful multi faith calendars leftover and are giving them to Westworth for free for any who would like to pick one up. The calendars give the major holidays and celebrations of various faith traditions and have pictures of beautiful artwork. Please call the office to arrange a time to pick one up.
JAYME GIESBRECHT WITH THE WINNIPEG JAZZ ORCHESTRA
Many of you expressed appreciation for Jayme Giesbrecht’s singing at three recent Westworth church services. If you would like to hear Jayme singing real jazz with the Winnipeg Jazz Orchestra in a free concert, go to the following link. It opens on March 1, and will be available for viewing for two weeks. Uplifting!!! .